1 whole organic chicken (organic chicken will give you a much better flavor), cleaned and cut into 4-5 big sections
2 onions, peeled and quartered
4 stalks celery, wiped and chopped
2 carrots, washed, bottoms and tips cut off
1 TBSP salt
Turn InstantPot to Saute. Put oil in pot and saute veggies up to a slight char. Add chicken and fill up with water until just below Max line. Cook 45 on the chicken meat setting. Once cooked, sift through fine-meshed colander and add salt to hot/warm broth. Pull apart chicken. When dinner is needed, use wanted amount of chicken broth to cook egg noodles and add wanted amount of chicken. Sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Monday, January 9, 2017
Sunday, December 4, 2016
Friday, December 2, 2016
Our lives have been crazy this year, starting with Abby's fainting. There were two ER trips for Dave, a scoliosis diagnosis, Nathan had his second concussion, there was All-Stars and a trip to Seattle area for 1 week to go along with that, there were multiple car troubles, sick children over and over, a sinus infection, an ear infection, much anxiety by a mama stretched to her limits and who seems to ever be exhausted, two ER trips by a mama with a concussion and now the aftermath of the concussion, trying to do my best homeschooling and doing daily mama work the best I can. After all, adversity builds character. And I'm not being sarcastic when I say that, It makes you stronger. And according to the song my girls love to sing and what my mama used to preach: "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger." And that woman went through more than most ever will in a lifetime, so I'm listenen when she talks. But let me tell you, Charlie, I can't wait to put this year behind us. Less than 30 days to go. :-)
But here are all the reasons that make me not throw in the towel and curl up in bed when I think I can't handle anymore (plus that awesome man by my side - unfortunately no pictures of him in here....)
That cutest of gray kittens is ruling our house. My friend Kathy G. told me this would happen. She was so right. :-) But it's in a good way. That little things has all six of us (yes, even Dave), wrapped around its little paws. The boy who always (ALWAYS) moves will lay down by the back door on the carpet to get snuggles. Or won't move for hours while he has a kitty sleeping in his lap.
A photo op. Nathan took this picture of the kitty using Nathan's smart phone to talk to Oma on What's App.
As per Isabelle, kitty needed a kitty to sleep with. That only makes sense. Isabelle would hold the kitty literally all day long. We have to make her let it go.
Copper loves his little friend and they play a lot (when no one is holding the kitten). It is amusing to watch them. Either Copper will go up to the sleeping kitten and use his snout to move the whole tiny thing across the floor until he wakes up and plays with him. Or kitty will attack the sleeping dog by jumping on his snout and wrapping himself around it and attacking by biting until the dog sleepily gets up and plays along.
K'Nex are just awesome. They now have Nerf-gun-like sets that Nathan adores. He builds his own guns and adds little extras to them. They have quickly become even more popular than the actual Nerf guns.
Just a cute picture of Miss Isabelle, who is growing her hair out. She wanted to have hair like Rapunzel from Tangled. So she is growing that never-ending hair.
Hannah decided that it was time for the kitty to go potty and brought it to the litterbox. She cracks me up. She'll carry the kitten and hum songs to it while bouncing it up and down. We keep trying to teach her that kittens don't like to bounce. But the kitten doesn't seem to mind. It's a pretty chill cat.
Homeschool madness. This year, I'm trying to make school more fun. It is stressing me big time getting all the fun activities in but it is so worth it. This was a pretty fun one for the Maori Warriors of New Zealand. It was fairly easy to do as well. As you can see, Abby more than enjoyed doing this and getting into character. We did something similar for the Celts and while they wouldn't remember anythings about the Celts if it were just for the chapter we did, they will immediately recall everything once I remind them of the blue swirls in their faces. We've also done Merovingian brooches (cloisonne), Viking brooches. The kids are loving this and making some as these for Christmas gifts. It is really fun seeing them enjoying the extras so much. I'm grateful our program allows me to pay for these projects for the kids.
Little girl learned how to put her shoes on by herself.
Here is her very proud face after she put her shoes on by herself. Oh, how I love that little face. It is so much like Dave's but so much cuter (sorry, babe).
There are sooooo many blessings in my life, including the most fun red-headed 9-year old I have every known (no photos of her either). It is easy to get distracted by everything that is making you weary and tired and wearing you down. But we need to be thankful in everything. And that most certainly helps.
Wednesday, November 30, 2016
Our neighbors down the road moved out of town. Bummer. But we try to get the kids together and enjoy each others company whenever we can. So Halloween was a perfect opportunity for some deeeelicious Pho and some major candy.
I'm actually amazed at how we did with costumes this year because the only person who was actually asked what they wanted was Nathan. Him and Treuce had decided weeks before that they would be assassins. Yes, a mom's dream come true. They were thinking along the lines of Ninjas when no one had an actual ninja costume and they were hard to come by, the theme evolved. They ended up deciding to make their own costumes and well, the girls definitely were way cuter! ;-)
This picture is such a story of my girls. Abby, the big mommy. Hannah, ever the helper. Isabelle, always up to something no one else has thought of. :-) That picture makes me laugh.
This girl is just the cutest. We had to take the kitty make-up off though because she was literally too stressed to keep it and not being able to touch her nose. She still puts her finger on her nostrils when she is tired or really relaxed. So the thought of messing the costume up or not being able to put her finger on her nostril, was just too much to bear.
There he is, the assassin. Why such a person wears gold bead necklaces, I do not know. It was funny though. We actually bought him a whole costume but he chose to just take the mask. While at the store looking at costumes, he was utterly fascinated with the mask. He made me wear it in the store to confirm that one truly could not see the wearers face even though the wearer could see perfectly well. That completely and utterly boggled his mind.
The whole gang. Warmed by delicious pho, made by Lintha, and some pizza for some of the kids, we braved this town. Eunice was the cutest little pirate and Treuce thought the Scream mask was quite awesome. Be aware, Elsa is spraying you with ice. Hannah is starting to lick the basket, time to get some candy.
Isabelle just cracks me up. She was probably the most excited of all the kids.
Yep, stuffed those cheeks with candy. Secretly too. I opened the door to let her out and like she knew, she tried to act normal. However, for some reason, she couldn't answer any questions. It was funny seeing her try though.
My happy crew. Tired but candy-happy. Sugar-induced crash following the next day. :-)
It was a really neat day with our friends. Their hospitality is always so beyond anything we;d expect. And it is such a treat to find out all about Lintha's Laotian traditions and foods. It is really sad they moved. Hopefully we can stay in touch for years to come.
Wednesday, November 9, 2016
Until actual election night, we had conversations here and there about the election, the candidates, the process. Nathan actually read parts of the pamphlet below but Abby was not really interested. But last night, after dad went upstairs to watch the election, the kids got really excited. Nathan came down first and asked for his electoral votes sheet. I explained it to him and he hurridly (is that a word?) went upstairs with a red and a blue pencil. Shortly after came Abby, requesting the same setup of clipboard, paper and pencils. I wasn't able to watch it as I was way to nervous. So I stayed downstairs to entertain the littles. We, probably as much of the rest of the nation, expected Hillary (who was not our candidate), to win quickly. After all, the media had ran many scenarios and it would be tough for Mr. Trump to break through and Hillary automatically got the big electoral votes for CA (55), WA (12), OR (7), and HI (4). The kids kept coming down and being excited at all he had accomplished and I kept reminding them that Mrs. Clinton had the West Coast still and to remember that CA alone had a whopping 55 electoral votes. But then my husband started coming down and getting excited. I think we started to hold on to hope when he got Florida. More states followed, but still not enough. And some key states came up that were Democratic voters, giving Mrs. Clinton the win. When the first blue states turned red, everyone in our house went crazy. But I didn't want to get my hopes up and then get them smashed!
While I colored fairies with little Isabelle fox and while Hannah slumbered upstairs, the states slowly turned from blue to red. We were all excited. There was hope. Now there was a real chance.
The night continued on and fox girl went upstairs to watch for a little bit while I did my gazillion loads of laundry. My family in Germany woke up, some of them excited, some of them upset. But that is politics. I'm not holding it against them. Especially since the ones who were against Trump, were being upset about things he was doing that they weeks earlier had complained about Germany not doing! So I know it is just misinformation. But Europe was shocked, to say the least. My German friends, Trump supporters, were shocked. One of my friends, Ellen, was up all night trying to understand. She was excited when they called certain states and asked what he had to win.
It was getting late and my little fox girl was even getting tired. She went to bed without much of a fight. When the last three battlestates were showing a lead by Trump (MI, PA included) even my die-hard boy hit is stay-awake limit and went to bed. Abby was invited :-) to go as well and went, relieved because she obviously had taken on our beliefs, stuffed kitty and real kitty in arm to her bed. It took way too long for the news stations to call him the winner because my poor heart had such anxiety. Right before Mr. Trump came out to make a speech, even Fox News and CNN finally called him the winner of this election. David was ecstatic, to say the least. He had felt a lot of anxiety in the last few weeks for the direction the country might go. He is a strong patriot and obviously was also anxious for his children. Truly, he loves America so much. It was hard for him to see his beloved America change in a way he did not value. We sat up way too late, talking, celebrating and enjoying the new President's first speech. It was a speech of unification. How this campaign was hard and he reminded all Americans that we are just that, Americans. All of us. He reminded us to come together. Because that is what Americans do at the end of the day. God gave us another chance. He's used imperfect men over and over in history to do great things. I strongly hope this is a wake-up call for this nation and that we will unite and we will not implode from within. My hope is that America will once again be a lighthouse for the world. Maybe not during this president's term, but hopefully by the time our children grow up. The chance is laid before us, a tide has been turned.
|Electoral Vote sheet that the kids were filling out during the election. Here is Nathan's.|
|The booklet the kids could read about the process and the candidates.|
|Nathan captivated, cute girl anxious, dad excited.|
|Not all the presidents are on here. My lens is too small. But this is a fun piece for the kids to read through the presidents and find interesting facts.|
|Fox girl and I colored fairies, which was quite less anxious than watching the election. After this year, I can't handle a lot of anxiety.|